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"This time it wasn't just the water I saw," DeeDee gushed to Clarence who held her chilled hands as if in prayer while Bianca wedged her into bed against a tall stack of pillows. "I saw his face. His fine features in profile. The air leaking out of him until the bubbles stopped and the water was still. Deadly still."

"My love, this can't go on," Clarence said. "It's not good for you." Bianca poured some sherry into a water glass.

"I can't help it," DeeDee wailed. "What am I to do with these unbidden images?" Bianca thrust the tumbler at DeeDee's lips. DeeDee took a small sip and mopped her wet face with a swipe of her sleeve.

"Father, let me get her comfortable," Bianca suggested, but DeeDee moaned, "no." Clarence propped his wiry frame on the side of the bed. He clung to DeeDee's hand as she sipped again. The warmth began to spread through her chest, radiating out to her tired shoulders and stiff back.

"What am I to do with the information? Just ignore it?" she whimpered, her eyes searching her husband's face for an answer. Clarence bowed his head and gave it a gentle shake. He understood.

There was a tap at the door, but Bianca played linebacker when Mac poked her head in.

"Leave her alone for Christ's sake," DeeDee heard her stepdaughter hiss.

"We are. Just tell her we're following the trail we have. Officer Glumb is picking us up in five to check out the Sunset Park residence. Then we'll head to Ballys. JC's along as her eyes." Mac jabbed her chin in DeeDee's direction.

"Good. She can rest then..." Bianca let her sentence trail off as she closed the door.

What foolishness, DeeDee thought. How can I rest when I can't close my eyes? She let her shoulders relax into the pillows. Let a slow sigh slip out.

Suddenly the walls closed in on her. The light narrowed to a tunnel. DeeDee knew she wasn't asleep. She was not dreaming. And yet somehow she was. She was in a crush of people, all drinking, laughing and dancing. The music was so loud it hurt her ears. It was hard to see the layout of the room with so many bodies jammed into the place, but DeeDee did notice a large pool table. Over the heads of scantily-clad woman and silk-shirted, tight-jeaned men, she aw the lights of the city twinkling against the coming dawn.

The ringleader looked familiar. Some temporarily famous celebrity, perhaps? He was alternately shouting for people to get out and kissing the cheeks of women, slapping the back of men. DeeDee shook her head at the chaos.

She was in the dark, cocooned in soft, cushy bunting, her head spinning in a drunken stupor. Her fingers closed around the cold, slick neck of a bottle. The smell of alcohol made her stomach churn. She lay back and felt herself sink down, down through crystal, clear water. She squinted at the small squares that drifted past her eyes, but couldn't slow her descent. 'Help,' she tried to call. Tiny silver bubbles of air escaped her mouth as she opened it. She watched them float to the surface. 'Hold on to that air," she warned herself. 'Hold on and pray. That someone finds me.'

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